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How much will my spousal benefit be if I claim it at 62 and my spouse retired at full retirement age?

If you take a spousal benefit at 62, the earliest eligibility age, your benefit would be based on your spouse's full retirement benefit but with reductions because you are claiming early. 

For example, if you were born in 1957, your full retirement age (FRA) is 66 plus 6 six months, if you were born in 1958, your FRA is 66 plus 8 months, increasing to 67 for those born in 1960. Claiming when you turn 62 would provide a spousal benefit equal to 35 percent of your mate's full retirement benefit. The proportion increases each month you wait to file, maxing out at 50 percent if you do so at your FRA.

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Receiving a spousal benefit does not affect the amount of your spouse's retirement benefit. That's based on his or her own earnings history and claiming age.

Keep in mind

  • Under Social Security's "deemed filing" rule, you can't separately claim retirement and spousal benefits. When you apply for one, you're applying for the other, if you're eligible. Social Security will pay you whichever benefit amount is higher.
  • Widows and widowers are subject to different reductions for taking survivor benefits before full retirement age. 

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